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October 18, 2021

The Pitlane Interview: Romain Grabowski, Motul

If there is a brand that is truly motorsport-driven, that brand is Motul. They are involved in almost any form of racing and we took the opportunity to have a chat with Romain Grabowski, Head of Brand, to understand how they approach a partnership and what are their future plans.

Motul is a brand with a strong heritage in motorsport, how everything started and how you can evolve such a strong brand every year?

Exactly, Motul decided to be involved in motorsport from the very beginning to develop and improve the product but then from 1954, specifically at the 24h of Le Mans, Motul understood that motorsport was also a great platform to raise the awareness of the brand. However, because of sponsorship regulations, we had to wait until 1972 to be the sponsor of a car, in that case, a BMW Schnitzer. Today, we are still in motorsport because even if it is not mainstream as it used to be, there is still a strong community of passionate people and at Motul, we are truly passionate ourselves about motorsport and we want to meet the fans and show the technicalities of our products. Moreover, racing is the best place to build relationships with OEMs.

You are involved in so many championships, how do you select what to sponsor and are you afraid that there might be some cross-over of audiences in some instances?

No, we are not afraid. We have a very clear strategy in motorsport: we are very involved in motorcycle where we are n.1 brand and we feel that is our responsibility to keep this position. Regarding cars, GT racing is very important for us because it is a good compromise between being premium and being close to road cars. Then, we like endurance racing because few clients are looking for performance, but all of them wants reliability. So, endurance racing is the perfect place to showcase our capabilities.

Do you see Motul more as a motorcycle-dedicated brand rather than a car-dedicated brand and what are your plans?

Both, but we can actually lubricate also marine and truck engines. When we decide to enter a market, we start activating the motorcycle community because it is made of passionate and DIYers and after that, we use these solid foundations to access the passenger car market. So very often we get to the car customer via motorcycle.

You recently entered the lifestyle space, tell us more about it.

We are one of the few companies that can do it in a very genuine way because of our strong heritage since 1853. And we are doing it because we want to share more with our fans, until 2020 we were able to provide very high-quality lubricants. Now we can provide clothing and step by step we will be able to provide much more. But we will only do something that is aligned to the Motul brand and our environment.